Marketed as a ‘love letter to fandom’, Geekerella plays with the well-known Cinderella story and strives to offer a fresh take. Our titular geek, Danielle (or Elle for short) is orphaned and living with a ‘stepmomster’ and two stepsisters.
Poston writes Elle as a fan obsessed with the fictional science fiction show, Starfield. Starfield comes across as a Star Trek/Firefly hybrid, and it is around this show where the rest of the story takes place. Hoping to reinvigorate interest in the show, Hollywood announces a reboot starring a soap opera star as the lead character of Federation Prince Carmindor, much to the chagrin of Elle and most of the Starfield fandom. Through a chance encounter via text, both Darien (the soap opera star) and Elle spend the bulk of the novel getting to know one another without actually exchanging who they really are.
What I liked about this story was the relationship between Elle and her late father. Poston did a fine job illustrating the close relationship the two shared through their love of Starfield and all things geeky. This is where the story truly shined. I never tired of reading about Elle’s remembrances of her parents dancing in the living room.
While I’ve never personally been to a Con, the depiction of Excelsicon felt real, and my desire to attend ComicCon only grew. Also, Sage was a great character. I loved her personality and her hilarious lines.
However, there were a few drawbacks. I liked the pacing of most of the story, but the last twenty pages felt rushed with a couple questions left unanswered. Of course, this was a YA contemporary and meant to be ‘fluff’, so I expected cheesy dialogue. Surprisingly, the dialogue flowed and wasn’t too cringy.
I wanted the stepmother and stepsisters to be more fleshed out than they were. They felt too much like flat stereotypes, although I appreciated the little extra depth applied to Calliope’s character. Readers don’t get a lot of information about Chloe or Catherine in terms of their motivations or their fears. Their characters felt rushed without much thought given to them. I know this was a retelling of Cinderella and that includes the evil stepmother and stepsisters, but I wanted a little extra something involving their characters.
(Perhaps it was only my copy, but there were four spelling and grammatical errors that took me out of the story.)
Overall, I’m glad I finally read this story, and I look forward to Ashley Poston’s other works.